Review: ‘The Umbrella Academy’ brings fresh perspective to modern superheroes

Moss Brennan, Reporter

“The Umbrella Academy,” is a Netflix series released on Feb. 15, is about people who have unique attributes and abilities such as having the body of a gorilla, throwing knives with incredible precision, altering reality with a lie, interacting with the dead, teleporting, time traveling and releasing destructive waves of force using sound.

“The Umbrella Academy” is based on Gerard Way’s comics of the same name. Way is the former lead singer for the emo, pop-punk band My Chemical Romance.

Developed by Steve Blackman and Jeremy Slater for Netflix, “The Umbrella Academy” begins with a Russian teenager, not pregnant, spontaneously giving birth in a pool. That day, 42 others were born at the same time, the same way.

A wealthy man, Sir Reginald Hargreeves, adopts seven of the children and creates the Umbrella Academy to teach them about their powers, forming a superhero group to fight crime. He gives them numbers instead of conventional names, but their robot nanny Grace eventually names them.

The show takes place after the children learn about their powers, when they are older and have grown apart only to be brought together by the death of their “father.”

One of The Umbrella Academy members, Number Five, comes back from an accidental trip to the future after surviving decades in a post-apocalyptic world, only for members of his family to not believe him at first.

The 10-episode series follows a fight to stop the apocalypse from happening when no one really believes it will.

Even if you haven’t read the comics, “The Umbrella Academy” compares to the likes of “Deadpool” or an Avengers movie with even more ego, but in its own unique format.

Some reviewers have said the Umbrella Academy members resemble a dysfunctional X-Men group and I couldn’t agree more. While they did not form as a conventional family, the Umbrella Academy members are adopted brothers and sisters who have the normal family bickering, but they also have the extra baggage that comes with superpowers.

With a drug-addicted death seer named Klaus, or Number Four, and a know-it-all half gorilla half man named Luther, or Number One, the “family” is dysfunctional at best and downright lethal at worst.

With moments that will make you laugh out loud, gasp in shock or even cry, “The Umbrella Academy” is an excellent show that deals with family issues in an unconventional way.

Through drug use, relationships, loneliness and the relationship with their father, the way “The Umbrella Academy” faces these controversies is a breath of fresh air from the normal superhero show. By normal superhero show, I mean the classic superhero’sparents are killed so they withdraw into themselves and eventually fight for justice. This is not that show.

Even if you do not like the show, the soundtrack, which features artists like Queen and Radiohead, has you wanting to listen to it over and over again. Way even makes a comeback to music with two songs.

While it might not be for every superhero movie fan, “The Umbrella Academy” is a solid show that deserves credit for changing the way superheroes are viewed as people with human problems and not as invincible beings.